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Drought

Emergency drought support funding

Support for farmers and their families facing drought has been boosted by $284 million in the NSW Budget 2018, bringing the NSW Government’s drought relief package to well over half a billion dollars.

Almost all of NSW is now suffering from an extended dry period, which is expected to continue throughout the winter and potentially spring.

To find out more about drought support available, visit the DroughtHub portal.

How we can help

Local Land Services is available to offer ongoing advice for farmers and landholders dealing with drought. We offer hands-on support where possible and endeavour to provide up to date localised information about managing and recovering from drought.

More specifically:

  • our Livestock Officers provide technical advice on feeding and nutrition
  • our District Veterinarians manage and advise on livestock health and welfare
  • our TSR rangers manage permits for grazing on TSRs and roads

We also assist in administering drought support packages and coordinate and conduct relevant drought workshops with guest speakers, including rural support workers and rural financial counsellors. Contact Local Land Services on 1300 795 299.

Assistance and support

Information on financial assistance is available from the DroughtHub or the Rural Assistance Authority.

Mental health

A major part of managing drought is managing your physical and mental health. The DroughtHub has an extensive list of online and telephone wellbeing support services.

The Australian Department of Health is committed to offering support services to rural and regional Australians. The Mental Health Services in Rural and Remote Areas provides funding to many of the much needed non-government health organisations committed to supporting rural communities.

If you or someone you know is in need of some mental health support, call Lifeline on 13 11 14, Anglicare on 1300 549 577 or get in touch with a Department of Primary Industry Rural Support Worker for immediate support.


Additional resources

Drought contacts & resources - for financial, wellbeing, drought management and animal health help

The Managing Drought handbook

NSW DPI Primfacts on drought

Kangaroo management


Containment feeding resources

Webinars from Geoff Duddy, Sheep solutions, via Sheep Connect.

Webinar - Containment feeding sheep - Delivered in March 2019, by Geoff Duddy, this webinar discusses all the need to know information that relates to feeding sheep in a containment area. Full of practical information, and tips to ensure that your sheep thrive, and you are conducting the exercise in a way that will assist you maintain your sheep in tip-top order, and minimise avoidable issues that may arise.

Confinement Feeding of Sheep - presentation - Geoff Duddy's presentation on confinement feeding of sheep. Hear from Geoff regarding the must-do's and what to avoid when setting up and executing a confinement feeding facility on your farm.

Australian Wool Innovation - Drought Feeding and Management

Download booklet here

NSW DPI Drought and Supplementary Feed Calculator

Click here

Confinement feeding presentation - Geoff Duddy, Sheep Solutions

Click here

Feeding presentation from Geoff Casburn, NSW DPI

Click here


Lessons from the Drought video series

The following video series has been produced to highlight the innovation and ingenuity of local producers and expertise of field staff in the face of the prolonged drought in NSW. The videos share knowledge and experiences that may be beneficial for others who are facing similar challenges, or who may do in the future. Topics include hand-feeding sheep, feeding for production, irrigated summer forage, and lambing on irrigated pasture. We hope you find them valuable.

Lambing on Irrigated Pasture

Deniliquin  farmer Adrian Dunmore speaks about his experience of using irrigated pasture to feed sheep during dry times.

Autumn Irrigated Pastures

Extension Agronomist John Fowler talks about how to best use water allocations during dry times, and preparing pastures for dry autumns.

Feeding stock

District Veterinarian Eve Hall discusses the energy requirements of different classes of animals, and the tools available for managing drought feeding.

Irrigated summer forage

Wakool farmer Les Gordon shares his experience of planning and preparing different feed options for cattle during dry times.

Feeding for production

District Veterinarian Scott Ison explains what the requirements are to manage livestock during dry times.

Hand-feeding sheep

Gerogery farmer Daniel Moll speaks about his practice of storing feed to prepare for dry seasons in a mixed farming enterprise. Livestock officer Liz O’Grady shares her knowledge on ensuring accurate seasonal feed budgeting by utilising feed testing and factoring in the different requirements for different
classes of stock.